Becoming a Missionary
Even after you have answered God’s call on your life, even after you have made life changing decisions, even after a church has sent you into the ministry, even after a mission board has agreed to back you, there is a lot that goes into becoming a missionary.
In my experience, once things become official, people want to know how long until you get to the field. Sometimes even before that, you tell people how God is working in your life and they want to know when you’re leaving. They don’t ask out of spite, or because they think you are lazy, but sometimes they just don’t know how much goes into following God’s call to a foreign field. I didn’t know how much would be asked of me and my family even before we started on deputation.
That is the place I am at right now. My family and I are just beginning deputation, and I cannot count the hours spent in preparation for this moment. We worked on things like prayer cards, and presentations, and contacts, we’re still working on that one. Everything we needed was in the hands of design artists, and printers, and editors, and we were working to get it all accomplished while still holding a position at church and working forty hours a week at my regular job. This is a hard time for a missionary because he still doesn’t have many answers for those who ask, and he doesn’t have enough time for the things he wants, but he also doesn’t see much reward or headway in the things he is getting done.
However, even as I say that, I am reminded of all the little things God does for us even in those times. I don’t think a day went by that God did not offer encouragement to me and my family. I say offer, because there were sometimes that we were so blinded by what we needed, that we missed out on what God was giving us. His mercies are new every morning and I know that more now than even a few months ago.
It is amazing how often the small lessons are the hardest to remember. It is also amazing what great lengths God has to go to, in order to get our attention, and remind us of all the small things He does for us each day. I hope you will glory in the gifts God gives today, and not get caught up in the worries of tomorrow. This is just one of the many lessons God has taught me on the road to becoming a missionary.
Bobby Woodfin, BMW Missionary Appointee
Photo: courtesy www.vacanzativajournal.com